Monday, 30 January 2017

Hallowe'en Pumpkins

I'm sharing another 2016 page with you today so the album appears to be back on track, at least for now. This one's from Hallowe'en when my daughter's Explorer Scout Unit tried their hands at pumpkin-carving.

Believe it or not, this page started out from a Stick It Down sketch. I had three photos, two landscape and a smaller square, and I initially rotated the sketch to suit them. As I went on, I dropped the smaller photo, added in more paper layers and rotated the background back again while keeping the photos at 90° to the original. Hopefully you can still see the sketch in my finished page.

I used old October Afternoon papers from several collections and fussy cut most of the embellishment pieces from a Witch Hazel paper. The frame on the photo highlights my daughter's Harry Potter pumpkin.

Cardstock - Craft Creations?
Paper - October Afternoon Witch Hazel, OA 9 to 5, OA 5 & Dime
Letters - October Afternoon Daily Flash
Die-Cut & Brad - October Afternoon Witch Hazel
Enamel Dots - Teresa Collins, Doodlebug, American Crafts/Shimelle
Ink & Mist - Docrafts

X-Cut Circle Punches

Friday, 27 January 2017

Guesting at Stick It Down

I'm the guest designer at Stick It Down today, with a card based on their January sketch.

As I posted a couple of weeks ago (A Year of Cards), I want to change my approach to card-making in 2017. No more making random cards just because a sketch or challenge appeals to me; each card should be made with a specific person in mind. 

So... this card will be for one of my nephews, probably the older one but as he'll be 21 next birthday I may make him a specific '21st' card and pass this one to my younger nephew instead. I chose the Mr Mister collection from Papermania and picked a retro gaming print for the main pattern on the card, with complementary papers for the border and the circle. I made my circle larger than the one on the sketch, bumped it up on some scraps of chipboard and moved the sentiment to lie across it.

Stick It Down have three sketches each month, for single and double scrapbook pages as well as cards, so hopefully there's something for everyone. Why not pop over, take a look and link up your creations too?

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

NCS Graduation

Having said last post that I am going to forget about 2016 for a while and scrap whatever photos take my fancy, I'm back to it almost straight away. 

This page is from December when my daughter and her team-mates graduated from NCS - National Citizen Service. This is a government scheme for 16-17 year-olds delivered in three parts - Adventure (outdoor activities away from home), Skills (workshops in a university or college) and Make a Difference (a community project that they choose, plan and deliver). See
for more information, especially if you are in the UK and you have a teen.

I worked with another sketch set as part of the January challenge in Facebook group For the Love of Pretty Paper, but I flipped it horizontally and swapped the two smaller photos for a larger one. I also replaced the frame with a longer strip of paper to give me a place for my journalling.

I used new Echo Park paper for my background and found an excellent match for the colours in an old My Mind's Eye 6x6 pad. I kept the rest of the papers to simple monochrome patterns to calm down the busy background.

Paper - Echo Park Everyday Memories, My Mind's Eye Just Splendid, Photo Play Fun with Friends, American Crafts, Crate Paper
Letters - American Crafts, Pebbles
Sticker - Echo Park Everyday Memories
Enamel Dots - Fancy Pants, Doodlebug, Trimcraft
Ink - Docrafts
Mist - Cosmic Shimmer

Fiskars Shape Cutter & Circle Template
American Crafts Notebook Border Punch
Hobbycraft Star Punch

Saturday, 21 January 2017

No. 4

Right now, my head is telling me to get on with 2016 pages, but my heart isn't in it. I have a list of pages I 'need' to make but I'm just not feeling inspired. I also have sketches that I want to use and that I can't fit to any of these pages on my 'to do' list. Scrapbooking is meant to be enjoyable, a hobby not a chore, so... I'm stepping away from 2016 and scrapping what I fancy in order to get my enthusiasm for sticking bits of pretty paper together restarted. 

I picked a sketch from the January challenge in Facebook group For the Love of Pretty Paper(originally published by Sketch Savvy) and rifled through my old photo albums for pictures to fit it.

This pair, of my son and my grandad, almost fit; the larger one was a 4x6 landscape shot but I cropped out some of the clutter to make it square. The title relates to the fact that my son was my grandad's fourth great-grandchild; the journalling is about how he loved to tell people about them all (nine eventually) and count them off in order.

Having the journalling in the middle, between the photos, was really useful as it disguises the difference in exposure between the two photos; that would have been really obvious if the pictures has been next to each other. I 'painted' the circle with shimmer mist, and also stamped hearts and asterisks around it in yellow, but the stamping is quite hard to see.

Paper - Basic Grey Serenade, Basic Grey Spice Market, Echo Park Hello Winter
Letters - American Crafts
Card, Hearts & Washi - Unknown
Stickers & Enamel Dots - My Mind's Eye
Ink - Ranger, Hobbycraft
Mist - Cosmic Shimmer, Docrafts

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Banners Birthday Card

My scrapbooking mojo has gone AWOL recently; I still want to make pages, but I've been spending far too much time shuffling photos, papers and ideas without really getting anywhere recently. So I turned to card-making instead, hoping that cutting and sticking and finishing something would get my scrappy juices flowing again. It hasn't really worked, but I have another card made for my Year of Cards.

I used Card Sketch #89 from Sketch-n-Scrap and a 6x6 pad from Basic Grey's Mint Julep collection. This pad is down to scraps now, but there are still enough pieces left for a few more cards. 

The card is intended for my Nan; she'll be 95 next birthday and her sight isn't what it was so I chose strong colours for the two banners. I stamped and die-cut a smaller circle than the one on the sketch, and added a flower to it along with two small hearts and my sentiment on a small label.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Twmpa et al.

I'm filling in another gap in my 2016 album today; we holidayed in Wales last Easter where my husband and some friends walked up Twmpa (or Lord Hereford's Knob) in the Black Mountains. The 'et al' in my page title is for the two other peaks that they bagged, though Twmpa was the main objective that day.

I had four photos that I wanted to use, and I printed one of Twmpa at A4 on cardstock rather than photo paper so that I could use it as part of the page background. I've done this a few times before; printing on cardstock gives the photo a much softer look and it doesn't demand your attention, literally fading into the background.

I chose three other photos of our friends on the three peaks that they visited and printed them at a smaller size to overlap the bottom of the large photo. I used part of this sketch (which was originally published at Sketch Savvy and is one of four sketches for the January challenge in Facebook group For the Love of Pretty Paper) for the layout of the smaller photos and the paper layers behind them, and repeated all the papers at the top right of the page. The final step was to write my journalling directly on the large photo; there's no room elsewhere.

Paper - Studio Calico Maycomb, My Mind's Eye Now & Then, My Mind's Eye Cut & Paste, Carta Bella Baby Mine
Letters - Freckled Fawn
Washi Tape - Trimcraft
Flowers - Poundland
Pearls - Mark Richards
Ink - Docrafts

Big Shot & X-Cut Tags Die

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

A Year of Cards

I haven't really made any New Year's Resolutions, but I do want to be a bit more organised with my card-making as I have two terrible habits that I need to change: firstly, when I see a challenge that I like, I make a card for it without any particular person in mind; secondly, when a birthday is coming up I assume that I will have a card to suit (from my first habit) and when I discover that I don't I end up making a new one at the very last moment.

I've written a list of all the people that I make cards for each year, and it's only 20 so not too onerous. As I make each challenge card this year, I want to be making it for a specific person so that I have exactly the right card ready to go when the date arrives. I've been thinking about this for a while, and I've already made one (back in October), but as I prepared to make the second one, my thoughts turned to how I will store and organise the cards themselves and I remembered a Bo Bunny card organiser kit that I won a few years ago. It's been languishing on a shelf ever since, but last weekend I pulled it out and assembled it at last.

The kit is called A Year of Cards and comes with eight chipboard pages, all the papers needed to cover them and an assortment of chipboard and die-cut flowers for decoration.

Starting with the cover, I found that the orange scalloped chipboard was just a little shorter than the page, not much but enough to upset me so I didn't use it. I swapped the brown twill provided for a silkier ribbon and added the two flowers shown, but not the green button as I thought the flower middle was prettier without it. I also dropped the 'a year of' letter stickers and just used the 'cards' chipboard pieces.

Inside the album, I kept things fairly simple. Each page has a patterned paper at the top, another at the bottom, stuck on three sides only to make a pocket, and a strip across the top of each pocket. The kit includes chipboard circles to stick on and label each pair of pages (Jan/Feb, Mar/Apr etc) but I chose not to use them as I was concerned about both their bulk and their longevity as they didn't seem secure. Instead I used some months stickers from My Mind's Eye to label each page.

There are extra die-cut and chipboard embellishments for the pages, but I like the clean and simple look of the pages as they are so I didn't use them. The whole album is about 7" by 11" and just about holds a 4x6 card vertically, though I'll probably keep them horizontally as shown in the February pocket.

Here's looking forward to a productive and organised card-making year...

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Happy New Year 2016

Yes, you read that correctly - this photo is a year old, not a week old, and the page will be the first one in my 2016 album. My husband spent the first few days of the year on Dartmoor with some friends and one of them took this picture which I pinched from Facebook. 

I used one of the sketches from the January challenge in the For the Love of Pretty Paper Facebook group (originally from Sketch Savvy) but I played with the positions of the different elements. I had two half-sheets of paper in my scraps box that were calling out to be put together so I used them for my background here. I layered my photo on another scrap plus pages from a 6x6 pad and cut the title and the vellum leaf sprays on my Silhouette.

Cardstock - Bazzill
Paper - Basic Grey Granola, Authentique Nestled
Vellum - Doodlebug
Phrase Stickers - Cosmo Cricket
Flair - Imagine That
Ink - Ranger
Gems & Label Stickers from my Advent Calendar

Silhouette Portrait & Cut Files
Woodware Scalloped Circle Punch

Thursday, 5 January 2017


Every year we celebrate Guy Fawkes Night at my parents. It's the one night of the year when you can (almost) guarantee that the whole extended family will be there. We've been doing it since we were children and the evening has hardly changed in nearly 40 years. BUT, there are no photos. It's hardly surprising since you just wouldn't have taken pictures on an evening like this in the 1970s, but the camera rarely comes out even now and the event is missing from my scrapbooks. I know that I could scrapbook it without photos, but that seems pointless as there's always been the feeling that next year I will take pictures and get it documented. To be honest, I've tried a few times but taking pictures in the dark is hard, and no-one stays still long enough. Last year I concentrated on the fireworks, and got a few decent shots so the event has now been recorded, but I'd like some 'people' pictures one year if only I can persuade my family to co-operate...

Anyway, on to the scrapbooking. I used the December Week 3 sketch from Let's Get Sketchy, and played with the photo sizes and orientation. I wanted a hand-written look to my title, like it could have been written in the air with a sparkler, so I found an appropriate piece of clip-art and cut it on the Silhouette. I decided to add extra layers above the photos and at the bottom of the page, so I veered away from the sketch a little, but I think the bones of it are recognisable.


Cardstock - DCWV
Paper - My Mind's Eye Jolly Holly, Studio Calico
Journalling Card - Crate Paper Bundled Up
Stickers - Crate Paper, Paperchase
Flowers - Great Expressions
Gems - KaiserCraft
Washi Tape - Efco
Ink - Ranger

Silhouette Portrait
Big Shot & X-Cut Ticket Stubs Die

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Xmas 2016

We had quite a quiet Christmas, and the camera barely came out to record it. I have just one photo of us and our Christmas lunch, and it's not even a good picture as the lighting is wrong and my son has his eyes shut. Thus I wanted a bold page design that would complement, rather than highlight, the photo on the page. I hit upon last month's single page sketch from Stick It Down, picking on the letter X to start my Xmas title.

I used my Silhouette to cut the title, enlarging the X, offsetting it to make a frame for the holly paper and welding it to the M to continue the title under the photo.

Cardstock - Papermania
Paper - Crate Paper Open Book, Simple Stories DIY Christmas
Numbers - Basic Grey
Brads - Simple Stories DIY Christmas, 7Gypsies Zanzibar
Enamel Shapes - American Crafts/Shimelle
Washi Tape - American Crafts
Mist - Docrafts
Ink - Memento

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Have Yourself a Crafty Little Christmas

A few weeks ago, I blogged about an Advent Calendar swap that I organised, and now I've made a scrapbook page with the photos. My page design was inspired by Sketch 140 at Scrapthology, but I only followed it in the loosest of senses, with my photos going round two sides of a square.

One of the Advent Calendar envelopes that I received had some 8x8 papers, and I picked one of those for the basis of my page. I then set out to include something from every swap member. It makes for more embellishment than I typically use, but I'm very happy with the result. 

Cardstock - American Crafts
Letters - American Crafts, October Afternoon
Ink & Mist - Docrafts
Everything Else - From the Swap